There are few things done in the kitchen quite as anxiety-inducing as the moment when you have to turn a delicate piece of fish. One wrong move and that tender flesh crumbles into an unsightly mess. It’s for precisely this reason that seafood has a dedicated utensil: the fish spatula.
Designed with a wide head that tapers toward the handle and large spaces between its slots, fish spatulas have thin edges perfect for slipping between a salmon fillet and your pan of choice. On top of that, they provide enough surface area to support that fillet until it’s returned to the pan.
While it’s a great tool to have if you enjoy feasting on aquatic delicacies, fish spatulas are actually some of the most versatile turners around. Use one to flip burgers during your next barbecue or take advantage of its dimensions to invert several spears of asparagus all at once. They’re even great at flipping pancakes for breakfast.
We’ve rounded up our top four models available on Amazon so you can get cooking as quickly as possible.
1. DALSTRONG Professional Fish Spatula
Made from tough anti-corrosion stainless steel, this spatula is equipped with a military-grade fiberglass resin handle ergonomically designed for comfort. Together, these materials make this model one of the sturdiest on our list. Its front edge is beautifully angled and ultra-thin to effortlessly slip under delicate foods to manipulate or turn them. Plus, its inherent flexibility means that any cook can maneuver a dainty cut of fish without worry of it breaking in two.
Pros: The fiberglass resin handle is engineered for a grip with maximum comfort.
Cons: The head’s curvature might be too extreme for carrying certain larger foods.
2. Lamson Chef’s Slotted Turner
Being a sturdy utensil doesn’t have to mean being bulky. This turner is a perfect example. Built with full-tang construction, this model has a stainless steel head and a handsome oiled walnut handle fixed with brass rivets. Not only good for handling pieces of catfish, it’s also equally adept at flipping crepes, portobello mushrooms and countless vegetables. The thin profile of its head means it works just as easily on the grates of a grill as it does in a saute pan.
Pros: Its light weight makes for easy handling.
Cons: The wooden handle means this spatula will have to be hand-washed and regularly oiled.
3. Victorinox Chef’s Turner
Measuring 6″ inches in length, this excellent turner is one of the shorter models on our list but no less useful––being utilitarian is part of the brand playbook, after all. Featuring a head forged from high-carbon stainless steel for the ideal balance of flexibility and strength, it also has wide slots to provide efficient drainage when flipping foods. It has a thin edge and subtle curvature that can sneak under a crabcake while it’s frying without bruising the crisp exterior unnecessarily.
Pros: Its compact dimensions make it a great choice for cooks with smaller hands or less storage space.
Cons: The wooden handle will require more maintenance than a resin version.
4. Mercer Culinary Hell’s Handle Fish Turner
No matter what task you’re tackling with your fish spatula, it needs a good grip to avoid undue wrist and hand fatigue. Unlike every other model on our list, this design uses a non-slip, textured coating on its handle so you can manipulate the trickiest foods with confidence. It has the added benefit of absorbing 50 percent less heat to stay cool no matter how hot your pan is. A head forged from Japanese stainless steel is durable yet light enough maneuver wherever you may need.
Pros: Japanese stainless steel is sure to last the test of time.
Cons: Its textured handle might be too bulky for some cooks’ hands.